Your Next Romance Show: Classic Alice

Webseries have rapidly become my go-to for romance in the desert valley of television that is summer, and I’m in love yet again…this time with a series I initially rejected. Classic Alice starts out slow, and I recommend skipping around a little bit in the first two episodes, but by episode three it really kicks into gear and rapidly becomes charming and wonderful.

Alice is a university student who agrees to help out a friend by filming a documentary in which she reads and attempts to live out some aspect of a series of classic novels. The first two she does are Crime and Punishment (she commits a crime) and Pygmalion (she undertakes to makeover an engineering student to surprising results). Also, one of the characters is in love with Alice…and then two are. Delicious. You guys, have I ever steered you wrong? For your reference, I love The Lizzie Bennet Diaries and The New Adventures of Peter and Wendy, and am not particularly fond of either Emma Approved or Frankenstein, MD, which I found to be underwhelming. The first ten episodes of Classic Alice have aired (you will want to make it to episode 10, trust me), and new ones come out every Tuesday.

Adrien Brody Interview


“The man who strode into the Sunset Marquis this month was funny, warm, sensitive and a bit manic, which he said was a symptom of jet lag….While a lot of actors are rather one dimensional off screen, he is refreshingly the opposite. His broad interests (he also likes fast cars, sometimes participating in celebrity races) make it hard to squeeze his personality into a prefabricated narrative, a specialty of the celebrity news media. Suddenly, the career frustration is entirely understandable: Hollywood wants to keep Mr. Brody in the serious box, but he keeps banging on the walls and insisting he is more than that — and he is right.” – Wonderful if slightly bemusing New York Times interview with Adrien Brody

Illustration Love: Our Ends are Beginnings


by Paradisiac Pictures (inspired by Kingdom Hearts)

And the sea will grant each man new hope, as sleep brings dreams of home

peacesA good day. I am thankful.

Volunteered at a shelter, then a long, good workout, now home, eating peaches, contemplating making some almond milk hot chocolate, and beginning a Ngaio Marsh mystery book, while the fan whirs in the background with the last promise of summer.

Life is heavy, sometimes, in its wholistic measure, so let it be light in the small things.

Apologia Litania

Today in Pest’s open air markets there is a sale on holy
water and scapulars, hand-carved chess pieces, and Oriental
spoons whose sole task is to approximate the luxurious

sprawl of the Danube. There are swords upon which I’d throw
myself were it the time and place to throw myself
upon vanity, and fresh fruits. Think of a hitchhiker’s passport

to heaven. But there is a holier water distilled from the tap
and used to clear the ciborium of divinity that she poured
into the mulch insulating the dogwood. What is devotion

more than loyalty to that alternate power truly and ably
able to wound us; worship that it seeks to soak into the roots
of a precious tree. For all my talk of tied-down guns and dying

with my boots on, the way I play Augustus McCrae giving all
of himself to the gangrene to spite his rotting legs, the voices
in which I say A man isn’t a man if he doesn’t have the faculties

with which to kick a pig—for all of that, you have seen me absolutely
ugly as I listen to my father preempt his dying wish in which
he wishes I become a priest: baling bread, smearing ashes, falling

in love with a crisp cassock and phrases like Latens Deitas-
and you have borne it. My Pillar of Autumn. My Tower
of the Off-Ivory. You said to me yesterday a second time

wounded lover, who else would love you? And no one would.
And I know I do not yet understand this morning’s market
where I’ll guess wrongly under which shell lies the pea.

-John Fenlon Hogan, Linebreak

Coffee Illustration: Fill ‘Er Up!

coffee illustration fill er up

Alisa Bobzien (sadly the art print is no longer available. but check out her other awesome coffee prints!)

The Blue Pill: Caitriona Balfe in Outlander

caitriona balfe claire randallThe stunning Caitriona Balfe in Saturday’s Outlander, a show which is rather wonderful

Book Review: The Emperor’s Soul by Brandon Sanderson

theemperor's soulThe Emperor’s Soul, Brandon Sanderson

Brandon Sanderson is easily one of the best fantasy writers alive today, and reading any book of his has the warm feeling of falling into the hands of a master. You are safe and secure in a beautifully constructed plot with compelling characters. The Emperor’s Soul, though short enough to be a novella rather than a novel, has these usual characteristics.

Shai is a trickster who has lived on her wits for as long as she can remember, until her latest and most dangerous heist yet – a break-in to the imperial palace – goes wrong and lands her in prison. Shai isn’t just a thief, however – she’s a Forger, a rare individual with the talent to change any object by rewriting its past with magic. When the arbiters, who rule the kingdom under the direction of Emperor Ashravan, offer her a bargain, she has no choice but to accept it. Ashravan has been rendered catatonic by a surprise assassination attempt, and they need Shai to change him back to who he used to be. Her talent is illegal, considered heretical by the majority of the empire, but they are desperate. Shai agrees, initially simply to placate her captors, but gradually she is pulled into the most impossible, daring task she has ever attempted: can she remake a soul?

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Tea Review: Sakurambo Black Cherry

sakurambo cherry tea

Another tea sample from my favorite brand, Lupicia (a Japanese company with stores in various countries and insanely cheap online pricing). This is a “black tea flavored with Japanese cherries, which has a sweet and fruity aroma.”

Sakurambo is a lovely black fruity tea that strikes a nice balance between tea and cherry flavors – it’s not overpoweringly sweet but has enough flavor to please – it starts out smooth in the mouth and then unfolds to a delicate fruit flavor. It’s not overly cherry, either – if I didn’t know, I’d probably be hard-pressed to identify what kind of fruit was in this, and would probably go with peach or something lighter than cherries (which one always worries will taste like licorice or cough syrup). It also smells gorgeous – I inhale before each sip just to let that scent waft up. This would probably make an excellent iced tea and I plan to try just that soon. I won’t buy a bag of this quite yet, as it doesn’t displace my very favorite cherry green tea from a local teahouse, but I will make a note of it for potential purchase in the future. A good tea for summer.

The 12 Makeup Products You Need

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA (photo credit Essiebutton, one of my favorite makeup vloggers)

In my opinion, the only things you actually need as far as makeup goes are blush, lipstick,and concealer. Start there and you’ll be more than fine; you’ve added color to your cheeks and lips and covered up the most obvious problem for most women, which is under-eye shadow. 

Beyond that, here’s a whole host of other things, and it occurred to me today to sit down and actually make a list of the products for different parts of the face that contribute to a full makeup “look”. It’s bewildering for makeup newbies, all the references to what may seem like dozens of products – which do you actually need? What’s the full lineup?

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